The Buds love surprises! Well, OK, we love GOOD surprises, just to clarify. And we also love when something good just falls right into our laps without us even making much of an effort to find it.
That's just what happened last week when Bud Shaunna and her hubby made a trip to Abbey's Restaurant and Lounge for dinner. But this wasn't just any dinner - it was Bud S's and Bud Hubby's first anniversary dinner! AND, it was such a great meal that after some discussion with Bud Em, Bud Shaunna knew she had to let the faithful Taste Buds readers know about it.
Located at 145 Zane Street on Wheeling Island, Abbey's, a Wheeling-area favorite, was the perfect choice for Buds Hershberger for two reasons. One, Abbey's was the location of our first date. And two, we hadn't been to Abbey's since this first date more than two years ago. Seems like more than enough of a reason to head back and see what's new!
Although it was a cool and rainy night outside, the atmosphere inside Abbey's was quite warm and inviting. Bud Shaunna also liked how even if patrons sit in the "bar area," you definitely don't feel like you're at a bar - you still feel very much like a part of the restaurant! The very friendly waitress (who was wearing a Steelers jersey for all you fans out there) took our drink orders and gave us some time to scan over the menu.
One of Abbey's specialties is their wings, and they offer not only traditional style "Wing Zings" with the sauce on the side - or, if you're brave, with super hot #5 Wheeling Island Fire Station Sauce - but they also have child friendly honey-dipped wings, healthy choice wings which are grilled "naked," and Mediterranean style wings. In addition to wings, Abbey's also serves a large assortment of munchies, including several fried vegetable choices and the more unusual options of whole blue mussels or oysters on the half shell.
Pasta entrees on the menu include chicken parmesan, ravioli, whole blue mussels served over linguini, and Abbey's Pasta Special, linguini tossed with fresh spinach, artichoke hearts, roasted red bell peppers and tomatoes in a white wine garlic butter sauce topped with feta cheese. You can even add shrimp or chicken if you so desire. Specialty salads are also on the menu, including chicken, steak, seafood (shrimp and crabmeat), salmon or tuna steak.
Abbey's is also known for its rotisserie ribs and steaks, including a delectable-sounding Stuffed Steak, which is a New York strip stuffed with fresh herbs, shrimp, mozzarella and provolone cheeses and topped with mushrooms. Um, yum! After reviewing the steak selections, Bud Hubby decided on the Open Face Steak, a 12 ounce New York strip served over bread. This one is definitely not for someone with a modest appetite! This huge steak was, according to Bud Hubby, cooked to perfection. He dabbed into a bit of steak sauce, but he said he didn't need it and left it forgotten on the side of his plate. Bud Shaunna was amazed that Bud Hubby nearly cleaned his plate, as she often states how she can out-eat him in any given situation. Served with a side salad and baked potato, this meal rang in at $15.99 and certainly made for one happy Bud!
Bud Shaunna's eyes headed towards the seafood options on the menu, which include shrimp, tilapia and lobster entrees. Torn between the Yellow Fin Tuna Steak (Bud Shaunna LOVES tuna steak!) and the Norwegian Salmon, Bud Shaunna ultimately gave in to the salmon. Served Cajun grilled, this 8 ounce salmon was flaky and flavorful. Bud Shaunna also enjoyed the salad, noting with some excitement that there were beets in it. As a beet-lover, Bud Shaunna feels that any restaurant that actually includes beets in its salads deserves a round of applause. Bravo, Abbey's! At $17.99, this generously-sized dinner, which also included bread and a baked potato, was definitely worth it.
During and after the meal, Buds Hershberger discussed why we hadn't been back to Abbey's sooner. The location is great, the food is delicious, and the atmosphere is welcoming - what's not to love about this place? No wonder it's been a long-time area favorite. Bud Shaunna has a feeling that we won't wait until our next anniversary to head back to Abbey's. We'll certainly be there much sooner than that!
The Buds can be reached at tastebuds@ timesleaderonline.com